iQueer

A space dedicated to longtime QL blogger, Ulla Kelly.

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The Pussy Theory

By Ulla Kelly

It struck me today, with all the force of dandelion fluff in a light breeze, that I haven't tackled a dyke stereotype in a while. So - dykes and cats. Apparently dykes and cats go together like drag queens and heels; the questions therefore are: Do they really? And if so, why? As for the first question, I don't have a clue. Statistics are inherently dodgy and I don't have any. Not only do I lack stats, I lack cats too - if the truth be told, I have two dogs and I'm not ashamed of it. In fact, a lot of my dyke friends have dogs and cats or dogs instead of cats and I can't think of many who only possess cats. Still, I always attempt to enjoy a good stereotype where possible, so I've decided to conjure up some theories regardless.

My first theory is that the puns are irresistable. Cat. Pussy. Nuff said. Afrikaans dykes also get to indulge in lewd mouse* puns.

Cats are low-maintenance compared to dogs and girlfriends, thus cats are the perfect antidote to or substitute for those things. Plus, you can leave them overnight while you're out drinking and one-night-standing and you might return home to a slightly pissed off cat, but it won't have crapped on your carpet or spent the whole night chewing your favourite shoes. Also, you won't find a cat sitting with its arms folded and bags under its eyes saying, "And what time d'you call this?" through gritted teeth.

Cats have that whole superior/aloof thing going on - when a cat likes you it feels like an honour. Lots of lesbians fall for unattainable women and lots spend years embroiled in the lonely turbulence of unrequited infatuation. Ergo ... a cat's another handy way to satisfy emotional masochism on a daily basis. Brilliant!

Cats are well-known as witches' familiars. Lots of lesbians are witches and outcasts, so they have cats.

Visible lesbians tend to occur in urban areas, where it's generally easier to keep dogs than cats, due to space constraints. So the whole dykes and cats thing is a myth.

My final theory is this; cats are nice, dogs are nice. Some people prefer one to the other. Lesbians are people. Some lesbians have cats, some have dogs, some have komodo dragons - who cares? All stats and stereotypes relating to gay people should actually be regarded as deeply flawed until such time as homophobia is eradicated anyway. And even then, statistics remain subjective things.

If anyone needs me, I'll be making paper planes from market research surveys.

*In Afrikaans, muis (mouse) is a slang word for vagina.

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